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This blog is the outgrowth of the www.TheTruthAboutDaVinci.com Web site. Many people have asked questions or raised points of discussion on Dan Brown's book and its recent movie release. Therefore, this blog was created to take the discussion farther - to capture certain thoughts and answer some of the questions we've received at the site.

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Monday, May 22, 2006

Musings: How the movie moves away from the book.

I attended a Saturday afternoon showing of The Da Vinci Code and was keenly interested in how much it attempted to stay faithful to the book. Even reviewer David Ansen of NEWSWEEK said "Ron Howard and screenwriter Akiva Goldsman struggle mightily to cram as much as possible of Dan Brown's labyrinthine thriller into a 2-hour-28-minute running time, resulting in a movie both overstuffed and underwhelming." The script seems to at times sacrifice good movie making techniques to make sure that they are faithful to the written version.

This is why it was interesting to me to see the various intentional changes in the movie version. Some corrections have been made (Teabing states that 50,000 women were put to death during the European witch hunts over three centuries, not the 5 million that is stated in the book) and Langdon is presented as a skeptic to the Priory and the Grail legends instead of an in-the-know scholar.

The most intriguing change that I found was the almost complete absence of the whole sacred feminine topic that played such a key part in the book. Langdon is seen at the opening of the film signing a book with that title, so I will assume that the character believes it exists. However, there is no mention of the hieros gamos, or any ancient Christian or Jewish worship of a divine feminine. The most glaring omission is the fact that Sophie was estranged from her grandfather not because he caught her going through his papers, but because she stumbled onto a ritualistic sex ceremony. We kind of see that near the end in a desaturated and fuzzy flashback, but it's only for a second and never explained.

My first thought on this is "since when is Hollywood afraid of sexual content?" But then it may be that such a scene would be too much for the sensibilities of the average American movie-goer. Sure, everyone likes to believe a conspiracy was cooked up by the Catholic Church. And of course it is easy to ridicule those Christians who believe "a fairytale about Jesus being God". But if the alternative to Christianity is a religion where temple prostitution is the norm and intimacy is shared among a group - well, that just won't sell in Peoria as they say.


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Da Vinci Code Truth

  : This website is a response to Sony Pictures movie "The Da Vinci Code"
  based on Dan Brown's novel The Da Vinci Code